Tuesday, October 22, 2013

When you walked away

          You walked away, slowly; I could tell that you wanted to look back but didn’t want to see the tears on your daughter’s face.  Your son stood proud, strong, believing you’d come back soon.  He said just before you turned to leave that he would take care of mom and his sister while you are away. 

            We miss you now, every day we think about you, your daughter has stepped up and if it weren’t for her I don’t know what I’d do.  Your son speaks about you and your job.  He tells his friends that you are his hero.  At night he lays awake in bed after dinner, alone, praying for you. 

I miss your smell; it has worn off of all of your clothing and it no longer lingers in the house.  I tried spraying your cologne around the house but it just doesn’t smell like you when you wear it.  I miss the feel of your powerful shoulders below my chin as your arms wrap around me, holding me tight.  I close my eyes some days and pretend you are with me, I can see your beautiful brown eyes and the shape of your soft lips and I picture us sitting under the Birch trees in our yard, and I feel the strength in your hands, your warm hands. 

            It’s amazing how a person can take for granted all the little things their partner does for us, when you’d come home from work, you’d lean in and kiss me with your strong warm hand placed at the small of my back.  What I wouldn’t give to feel that now…it’s been so long though now that I almost can’t remember. 

Your son lost another tooth and got into a fight with another kid at school who said what you were doing over there was wrong.  Your son misses you; he lies in his bed at night wishing you would sneak in and snuggle with him for just a moment, until he fell asleep.  Your daughter got another “A” in her class today and prays for you and all of your co-workers each night before bed.

            Darling I miss you also.  I pray that you come home safely, I know what you are doing is right; I know you feel that you must protect everybody.  I know that your conviction to do what is right is strong and I love you for that. I just wish you could come home and protect me, protect me against the bad dreams at night and the hurtful pangs I get during the day wishing I could see you sitting next to me at the dinner table.  The kids said we couldn’t have pork chops until you come home because it’s your favorite.  I want to have pork chops again.

            I know I am not the only one who feels this way.  Your mother cries when we speak, so she doesn’t call too much anymore.  Your brother drives by the house periodically to check on us, he’s sick and tired of the people that protest your position, that he’s having a hard time taking that in the news on a daily basis.  I just remind him that your being there serves to protect their rights to protest. 

            There are so many of us left behind here at home, we know you believe in what you are doing, and we support you in spite of the fact that we don’t hear reflections of your sacrifice expelled in the news, more often than not it seems it’s just the oppositions views we are subject to, just the bad stuff, just the vanities in people that try and make a name for themselves under the guise of free speech.

            I am your wife, your mother, your father, your sister and brother and your son and daughter.  I am your neighbor who raises a flag in your honor every day.  I am the student from another country, an immigrant family who knows that without your service, the freedoms we enjoy here might not exist without your service. I am your kid’s teacher, who sees the pain of your absence in the faces of your children, and the pride in their eyes when asked “why the tears”.   I am a soldier who paid his/her dues and came back home…without you and now must move on with my own life, wishing I could be by your side, as brothers and sisters. 

            I miss you.  I love you.  I thank you.

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